New President, New Approach to Immigration

On January 20, 2021, President Biden issued several Orders on immigration. Some orders took immediate effect, while others may take more time to be implemented.

President Biden’s Immigration Policy

Immigration Executive Orders:

• Reuniting migrant children with their parents.
• Restoring asylum.
• A review of recent regulations, policies and guidance that made extreme obstacles in the legal immigration system.

Other immigration changes:

• Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) remains in place.
• Deportations are paused for 100 days as of January 22, 2021, with some exceptions, and new enforcement policies will be adopted.
• Travel bans* barring entry for nationals of certain Muslim-majority and African nations were revoked.
• Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) protection was extended for Liberian nationals until June 30, 2022.
• Enrollments in the Migrant Protection Protocols that keep asylum seekers waiting in Mexico were suspended — but it is unclear how cases will be handled at the border.

* The travel bans applied to nationals from Burma, Eritrea, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Libya, Nigeria, North Korea, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tanzania, Venezuela, and Yemen. NOTE: This situation remains fluid and policies can shift rapidly.

Will Congress Pass an Immigration Bill?

President Biden has proposed a sweeping immigration bill that would make more people eligible to legalize their status. At this time, Congress has not passed any immigration bill into law. This means that no new options to apply for legal status have been created, and no broad legalization program has been adopted. However, we remain hopeful that this is the start of great advances in the immigration field.

How Quickly Will Immigration Change Occur?

Although there have been many announcements with promised changes, many of them will take time to be implemented. Policies, rules, and laws will need to be put in place first. This means you may not see an immediate impact or be able to access new benefits in the short term. If you think that anything listed above may affect you, please reach out to our office. We are here to help make immigration less stressful!